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What Are Common Traffic Violations Committed by Motorcyclists in Illinois?

 Posted on May 12, 2020 in Criminal Defense

Will County traffic violations attorneysMay is National Motorcycle Awareness Month. Motorcycles share the road with much larger vehicles, and they can be more difficult to see due and also more vulnerable in a crash due to their smaller size and lack of protection. Motorcycle accidents can lead to serious injuries and even fatalities, especially to the person operating the motorcycle. That is why it is important for all motorists to be aware of other vehicles when traveling, whether it is a rural or urban street. Motorcycle riders have the same rights and responsibilities as other drivers. This also means they must obey all traffic laws, signs, and signals just like other motorists. If you are a motorcycle rider, it is important to understand the traffic laws that pertain to you to avoid violating them as well as causing a collision. In some situations, a traffic violation can even lead to criminal charges. 

Illinois Motorcycle Laws

It is not uncommon to see motorcycles weaving in between cars that are stopped in traffic or proceeding slowly in construction zones. However, this practice—known as “lane splitting”—is not allowed in Illinois. Motorcycle drivers are prohibited from passing between two other vehicles going in the same direction unless there is an open traffic lane to permit passing safely. 

Illinois is one of the few states that does not require motorcyclists to wear helmets. Eye protection such as goggles or glasses is required unless a windscreen is installed on the bike.

Handlebars cannot be taller than the driver’s shoulder height, and a passenger seat and footrest are required when another person is along for the ride. Additional regulations include having at least one rearview mirror, which can be located on either the right or left side. Headlights must be on at all times, even during daylight hours.  

A few more of the typical traffic infractions that are committed by motorcyclists include:

  • Speeding
  • Distracted driving
  • Driving under the influence (DUI) of drugs or alcohol
  • Going through a red light or stop sign
  • Riding on one wheel
  • Failing to yield to pedestrians in a crosswalk 

Contact a Joliet Traffic Violations Attorney

Besides increasing the chances of a motorcycle accident, certain traffic violations can put your driving privileges and livelihood at risk. Breaking the law can result in a ticket or even misdemeanor or felony charges, depending on the circumstances. At McNamara Phelan McSteen, LLC, our five attorneys have 150 years of combined experience with successfully handling all types of criminal cases in Illinois. If you or someone you know violated an Illinois traffic law while riding a motorcycle, contact our Will County criminal defense attorneys at 815-727-0100 for a free consultation.






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